The party slowly recovered from the long, pre-dawn battle with the werewolves and their prophet. They emerged from the sacred grove to find the Druid’s home and small settlement burned out, his crops trampled and burned, and numerous dead farm animals. Soon after, small groups of people began to show up, Druidical folk summoned the previous night from near and far to aid Annan. They quickly set to burning the dead werewolves, extinguishing the smoldering embers, and otherwise beginning to set the little community aright. The party provided some help here, but mainly saw to their own wounds, which were numerous. The Druid was very grateful for the party’s aid in the battle, and credited them with preventing the sacred pool and great oak from being defiled. The circle itself had been tainted, but he would purge that in the coming days and restore the defensive thorn hedge.
During the day, the party rested and continued to recover. Lune, however, was sent on a speedy errand on his Goat of Traveling to Morsby to procure as many silver arrows as he could get his hands on. They would be needed soon when the party went to finish their job with the werewolf pack. He returned later in the afternoon with a score of silver arrows. Meanwhile, Havok was deep in religious observances — the day of the great battle happened to be the hold day of his god, Hashrak, Lord of War (how convenient). Drogo also had something to tell the party — he was leaving them, having decided that this life was not for him. He would take his share of loot and head out on his own, back to civilization and other opportunities. He did sell a number of his magic items to the party, thing she felt they might need more than he would in his new life. With that, he left.
The next day, the Druid and his much-healed assistant came to the party and offered to use what healing they could to aid the party. This the party accepted, and soon were back in excellent condition. Although they thought to wait another day to rest, they decided they were sufficiently well off to set out immediately, a delay serving only to aid their foes. The Druid then suggested that one of his friends, a ranger, accompany them, as he might prove helpful. This they gladly accepted (Arduin had missed the battle, as he was out scouting in the wilderness, but was back now). So, they set out once more, following the stream northeast towards the Blueflood and the ruins of the werewolf and their prophet. As they came into the valley and turned east to the hill of the werewolves, they were surprised by an ambush of three werewolves. The party recovered quickly and soon slew two of the things and captured a third. This one they convinced to talk, and he told them there were only a handful of werewolves left, and the prophet. He gave general directions to find him in the ruins, in exchange for being let go. This the party did, and he fled west very fast and soon disappeared.
The party now came to the ruins, approaching cautiously but with confidence since the pack was much decimated. From outside, Parker heard some slight noises inside, but could not tell what they were. The party then entered the ruins and began to explore, not finding any inhabitants. As they got deeper into the ruins, they came at last to a door they’d not passed the last time. Sir Rowan could sense evil beyond, and Aristotle made himself invisible. Parker then picked the lock and Aldeberon shoved it open, causing a fiery explosion from a glyph of warding. Inside the room the party could see the evil prophet with a trio of werewolves, including the one they’d recently released. A pair of wererats in ratman form were also present, guarding the priest. As the front rank engaged the enemy, two more werewolves rushed from a hidden alcove and attacked the rear of the party. A two-sided melee followed, with Lune and Iban fighting in the back (Iban knocked one unconscious with a sleep spell). Up front, Aldeberon and Arduin tried to push into the room, as the evil priest began to throw spells at the party. A hold person did nothing, but his second spell was far more vile – slay living, which slew Havok outright just as his spell of silence blanketed the evil prophet.
The party pushed into the room and Parker began to pepper the priest with arrows as the fighters dealt with the minions. The evil priest now drew forth the dead finger and began to point it at people, inflicting pain and injury of some unknown sort. The defenders tried to block the approach to their master, but they began to fall one by one. Lune took down the last wolfman in the rear and Iban rushed into the room to add to the press against the priest, who soon came under attack by Alderberon and others. Meanwhile, Lune went to slit the throat of the sleeping wolfman, only to be backstabbed by a previously invisible ratman. The priest now drew his own scimitar and attacked with lightning speed (he was obviously hasted). But, the devastated wolf pack and prophet were no longer a match for the party after their defeat at the Grove, and soon the prophet went down unconscious while the last of his followers were slain. The party then decided to slay the priest, lest he bring some malediction down on them.
The party quickly plundered the many magic items he possessed and plundered some coin from a nearby room that served as his quarters. The most strange item was the ancient finger of some dead human, which the werewolves had referred to as the Finger of the Demigod, himself the “Scion of the Outer Darkness” — none of the party knew what that referred to (later, the Druid would say much the same, though he found the thing very disturbing – alien and evil). Rowan did not sense evil, but he was very disquieted by it and refused to touch it. In the larger room where the battle occurred, there was a large stone altar. This the party wrapped a rope around and, from a safe distance, pulled over and broke the stone table. There was a brief moment of disquiet at this, but no obvious ill effects. This done, the party decided to leave, leading the body of Havok on Lune’s magic goat.
The party now headed out, accidentally setting off another glyph of warding at a door they’d not previously used. Still, this was a minor slowdown, though their wounds were not negligible and their healer was dead. They made their way back to the Druid’s grove by late afternoon, from where Lune took Havok and a pile of treasure back to Morsby at high speed, where the local chief priest of Maladominus was only to happy to raise his fellow cleric from the dead (for a nominal fee, of course). Not long after dark, the two had returned to the Druid’s grove where they were well fed, if not well housed, by their still very grateful host. In the morning they would return to ruined imperial fort in the highlands to conclude their explorations.
– Experience: 1842 XP each